unified communications

Unified Communications: Beyond Telephony

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in gloCOM, sipPROT, TELCOware, Unified Communications

unified communications

Unified Communications works great for telephony and voice. It makes communicating fast, easy, and efficient. But a good UC solution should be doing much more than just telephony. Unified Communications can support and improve your business in many aspects.

Collaboration

More than just a buzzword, collaboration is key to productivity in the workplace. Unified Communications solutions support collaboration with features like screen sharing, file sharing, and presence. gloCOM, our UC app, offers all of these features and more. Learn more by reading 6 Unified Communications Features that Promote Collaboration.

Billing

Integrated billing software automates invoicing, rate-setting, and other accounting tasks to free your time and concentration. Unique to our Unified Communications suite, TELCOware is a provisioning platform that performs billing, ticketing, accounts, shopping cart, and more, so that you do not have to.

Security

The issue of security is heavy on the minds of most VoIP users today. Our Unified Communications solution goes beyond telephony to help secure your network. sipPROT is an advanced SIP security module that protects against SIP attacks. Unlike other solutions, sipPROT works with live traffic, protecting the system even while it is in use.

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voip softswitch

5 Benefits of the VoIP Softswitch

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in PBXware, Softswitch, TELCOware

voip softswitch

We have come a long ways since the manual telephone switchboard. 139 years, to be precise. From the days of manual telephone operators to PBXs to modern solutions that tap into VoIP technology to do more than just call routing.

We have written previously about what a VoIP softswitch is and even the difference between Class 4 and Class 5, but we had yet to actually delve into why you should use one. Let’s look at just a few of the benefits of using a VoIP softswitch…

1. Scalability

As a software-based solution, a VoIP softswitch can be scaled both up and down relatively easily. It will grow with your company so you can start as small as necessary. Upgrades are done by downloading new software.

2. Versatility

Routing, billing, reporting, and monitoring are just some of the functions that can be done on a VoIP softswitch. Integrated apps and software create a very comprehensive solution for maximum efficiency.

3. Billing

One of the most valuable functions of the VoIP softswitch, billing software is very accurate and gives you the ability to customize call rates and invoices for individual users. It takes the busywork out of billing so you have more time for what matters.

4. Cost-effectiveness

With no additional hardware to purchase, VoIP softswitches are more cost efficient than traditional switches. Upgrading via software is also much less expensive than purchasing new hardware.

5. Flexibility

Finally, with all of the aforementioned functions and capabilities, there is no denying that VoIP soft switches are very flexible. This makes them an ideal solution for all kinds of businesses and organizations.

An example of a VoIP softswitch is PBXware. Our integrated billing module is TELCOware. Visit our website to learn more today.

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telecom sales

How to Win More Telecom Sales

Written by Stephen Wingfield on . Posted in gloCOM, IP Phone, PBX System, PBXware, Phone Company, SERVERware, TELCOware, Telephone Systems, Unified Communications, VoIP

telecom sales

You step into the car dealership and look around at all of your options. Red convertibles, little sports cars, all-terrain trucks. In your mind, you’re already flying down the highway, the breeze in your hair, music pouring from the car’s speakers, when the salesperson interrupts your thoughts with his mundane descriptions of the type of rubber in the car’s tires and the new fuel injection system.

When customers buy a car, they want to know how it’s going to feel driving it, not all the little mechanical details. The same idea applies to Unified Communication sales. At Bicom Systems, we’ve learned that in order to win more customers, you must give them an experience, a feeling, not just a description of each component of a phone system.

Start by getting to know your potential customers. Understand their visions, their plans for the future. Ask them about their current expenses and problems and get them to look forward two or three years and tell you what they’d like to change. Get into the mind of the customer.

The next step is to shift the customer’s focus away from the phone system to the bigger picture. Don’t describe the features, describe how those features will change their lives. How they’ll be saving time and energy. How they’ll be making sales left and right. How the system practically runs itself. Bicom Systems products piece together to create a seamless system for customers. We tell customers that our PBXware, TELCOware, and SERVERware combination will free up their time to win more sales while the technical operations go on in the background.

Finally, don’t forget to include a number of applications. Potential customers can find “good phone systems” among your competition. But if you have a “good phone system” with additional applications to make life easier for the customer, that will set you apart from the crowd. Even the most simple application can make all the difference if it is incredibly useful. Bicom Systems offers gloCOM, our Unified Communications desktop and mobile app, as the icing on the cake. gloCOM and our other applications speed up otherwise laborious tasks and give our clients that extra push that they need to sign on.

In short, don’t get lost in the competition by just offering a phone system. Or even a good phone system. Stand out from the rest by offering a lifestyle.

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VoIP Integration

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in Cloud, gloCOM, PBX System, PBXware, SERVERware, TELCOware, Unified Communications, VoIP

voip integration

Regardless of how many times we write about the benefits of VoIP, it is always worth pointing out more. VoIP is a game-changer for almost all types of companies and organizations, but only if you recognize its benefits and use it to its full potential.

One such benefit of VoIP, particularly cloud-based VoIP, is integration. The first step to Unified Communications, VoIP can integrate with many or all of your other applications.

Seamless integration saves on time and money and boosts productivity and efficiency. Everyone from the smallest business to the largest enterprise can benefit from a more cohesive and synergistic solution.

Bicom Systems VoIP products are built to integrate natively. PBXware for telephony, TELCOware for provisioning, and SERVERware as a foundation work together seamlessly, especially when tied together by gloCOM, our desktop and mobile communicator app. Learn more on our website.

 

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  • 5 VoIP Features for Business Efficiency

  • 5 Ways Hosted VoIP Supports Collaboration

billing software

How to Choose Billing Software

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in TELCOware

billing software

Telecoms with good billing software save time, experience less stress, and have more satisfied customers.

So what should you look for in billing software? To start:

  • Web / Email – Choose an Internet-based billing software with an online portal and email invoices. This is so much easier and less expensive than the traditional paper and mail route.

  • Cost – Of course cost will be a factor in your choice. Look for software that matches your budget, but remember that you get what you pay for.

  • Notifications – Good billing software will have options for automatic notifications to both you and customers. This eliminates the need to process invoices month-after-month or track down late or missed payments.

  • Support – An often-overlooked factor, good support is essential. Look for a company with a solid support team that will be able to solve problems quickly and efficiently.

You can find all of these features and many more in TELCOware – our provisioning platform. Best of all, it is seamlessly compatible with the rest of our unified communications products. Learn more on our products page.

 

More posts like this one:

  • 5 Reasons to Choose Bicom Systems

  • 6 Guidelines to Choosing Call Center Software

itsp

How to Become an ITSP

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in How to Start & Grow an ITSP, ITSP, PBXware, Softswitch, TELCOware, Unified Communications

itsp

Becoming an ITSP or Phone Company is easier than it has ever been before. As communications technology has become more advanced in recent years, it has also become more simple and user-friendly. All it takes is a dream and some motivation to get started.

You can become an Internet Telephony Service Provider with four essential components:

  1. Hardware – This starts with a VoIP Softswitch and may include servers, routers, IP Phones, etc.
  1. Software – Core telephony services will be offered via unified communications software, billing software, etc.
  1. A VoIP Carrier – A VoIP carrier is necessary to become a services provider.
  1. Support – Too often forgotten, a good support system is vital to becoming a successful and growing ITSP. Nothing compares to having support from somewhere that has been there before.

Bicom Systems has all of the hardware and software that you need to get started, and our Account Managers are the icing on the cake. Visit our product pages to learn more or read our How to Start & Grow an ITSP whitepaper. 

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The Changing World of CLECs

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in CLEC, gloCOM, PBXware, sipMON, sipPROT, TELCOware, Unified Communications

clec

As the communications industry has evolved, CLECs have had to adapt and embrace new techniques to stay ahead in a competitive market. First they controlled their numbers, then transport, but what is next for Competitive Local Exchange Carriers?

While many changes seemed like insurmountable obstacles, CLECs have always found a way to keep up. More often than not, this is due to the local advantage. No matter how much technology advances, many customers will always value a local presence.

CLECs can add value and maintain a local presence with our Unified Communications suite. Tools like a Class 5 Softswitch, a Provisioning Platform, and Security/Monitoring apps integrate together seamlessly to form a powerful solution. Our Unified Communications app gloCOM is the icing on the cake.

Download our CLECs brochure to learn more.

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reasons-to-choose-bicom

5 Reasons to Choose Bicom Systems

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in gloCOM GO, PBX System, Softphone, TELCOware, Unified Communications, VoIP

benefits of bicom

At the risk of ‘tooting our own horn’, we jotted down some recent comments made by partners that chose Bicom Systems over our competitors. We hope these will help other telecoms stuck in the decision-making process.

1. Integrated Billing Software

A key part of our unified communications suite is TELCOware, our provisioning platform. Our partners report that no one else integrates billing into their telephony platform despite the clear benefits. This frees users from doing complicated billing procedures themselves or hiring a third party. Learn more about our Billing Software.

2. Simple, Effective Interface

Over the years we have seen many partners express relief when first viewing our simple, yet effective PBX interface. Our GUI is user-friendly and lets you focus your time and concentration on what matters most to you. Best of all, we work to improve the interface in each new release.

3. Mobile App

While most of our competitors do now offer VoIP mobile applications, we hear that none compare to gloCOM GO. And it is no surprise after the weeks and months dedicated to perfecting the application that ties together all of our other unified communications products. Learn more about our Mobile VoIP App.

4. More features

Our PBX feature-set has been carefully developed to give our partners the highest value possible. We have listened to customer requests and attempted to provide features both for their internal use and for the development of a higher valued end product.

5. Affordability

One of the complaints we get the most is our lack of pricing on our website, but those that take the time to speak with an Account Manager find our pricing structure more than satisfying. Unlike competitors with set-in-stone prices, we work on an individual basis to create a solution that matches the needs and budget of each partner.

If you are trying to choose a PBX system we’d love to chat with you. Contact us now or browse our products.

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unified communications

Marketing Unified Communications

Written by Laura Espinosa on . Posted in Business PBX, Call Center PBX, gloCOM, Marketing, Multi-Tenant PBX, PBXware, TELCOware, Unified Communications

unified-communications

Unified Communications. We all know and understand the idea of Unified Communications, but do our End Users? Are you promoting the benefits of Unified Communications to their full extent?

The definition of Unified Communications is the centralization of communications to increase availability to users. Unified Communications are available at any time, from any place, and on any device. This translates to not only basic communications, but also extensive features that set your product apart from the competition.

So how do we convey the significance of that to our End Users? Focus on the real, immediate benefits to the user and create an environment that meets the users requirements so completely that they could not abandon it. The deeper the roots that the user develops in your solution, the more difficult it will be for them to abandon it.

Some features of Unified Communications to focus on:

  • Ability to work from anywhere

  • BYOD

  • Archived communications

  • Lower costs

  • Increased & more flexible features

…What else would you add to the list? Brainstorm about how Unified Communications benefits your End Users and share your ideas with us!

all-the-pieces-header

How do ‘all your pieces’ fit together to become a Phone Company ITSP ?

Written by Stephen Wingfield on . Posted in IP Phone, IP Telephony, ITSP, Multi-Tenant PBX, PBX System, Phone Company, Phone Systems, Products, TELCOware, Virtual PBX

Probably the question that is not asked but always answered when making an introduction of Bicom Systems’ Products is the one in this title.

With so many pieces it is rather understandable why confusion may arise and yet having explained this many times now, recipients reply unanimously with confirmation that it all makes sense. For this reason it seemed only appropriate to write it down and make some other supporting diagrams and videos that really demonstrate the turnkey nature of all these pieces.

Quite simply, Bicom Systems can deliver the most turnkey telephony company with the most features and functions on the market.

We start with our platform, SERVERware. SERVERware comes in two editions, SERVER Edition and NETWORK Edition. See links for supporting diagrams.

SERVERware provides virtualisation and redundancy. In the SERVER Edition the virtualisation means that many application services can be set on the same server, The Primary Controller. These may include : PBXware MultiTenant or Call Center PBX Editions, TELCOware or other items such as Email Server, Web Site a vanilla Asterisk or Trixbox or FreePBX even. Each is contained within its own Virtual Private Server (VPS) and as such

The Server Edition can then in turn be set to mirrored redundancy, using a Secondary Server, so that should the Primary Controller Server fail the Secondary takes over. Although similar options exist with VMware, Serverware uses Virtual Servers and so the voice quality is best served by keeping the voice traffic on the CPU rather than in a virtualised manner. Serverware also has added security features such as being set in the CHROOT and ………………..

In the Network Edition, the roles of the original two servers change. Firstly all application services are now present on dedicated hosts. The Controller is then freed to perform two functions: duplicating data from the hosts to its own hard disks and monitoring the hosts that in the event of failure of a host that the services on the lost host will be reallocated to the next available host. As the cluster expands the duplication of data may be performed to a SAN.

The Primary Controller is mirrored to a Secondary Controller so that should the Primary fail the above two functions will continue.

Typically in an ITSP scenario one of the application services in its own VPS will be the Multi Tenant Edition of PBXware. It is here that the core telephony takes place from registrations to enhanced services and telephony billing that rates CDRs.

Then on another VPS may be a Call Centre PBX Edition of PBXware if a customer has a dedicate requirement. Often with Call Centers there is a need to access the MySQL database, run detailed reports and thrash CPU with Call Recordings, as such resource needs to be identifiably dedicated. This way a heavy usage call center can latter be moved to its own resource or indeed even for its component part be split to dedicated servers.

If a provisioning platform such as TELCOware be used then it too will have its own VPS on either the server or network edition of SERVERware. The provisioning starts with the CMS (Content Management Systems) creating a web site where visitor can peruse hard and subscirptions products created in the Shopping Cart Products & Services with a view to ordering. To place orders visitors must sign up and create an Account.

TELCOware does not have any real telephony, everything is virtual. After receiving an order it uses API to send instructions to PBXware to provision the service, registrations, DIDs, IVRs or similar. There are wizards in place to assist with this.

According to the subscription bought it will then generate an invoice at the end of the period which will reflect the subscription and any extra call spend made, drawing CDRs from the switch it is associated with. This could be one or many PBXware or even another system, Asterisk based or not.

Upon the invoice being settled by manual payment or automated with a supported gateway such as worldpay, authorize.net, linkpoint, paypal, skrill … funds will be attributed first to the subscription and then if available to the call spend fund on the telephony account on the associated softswitch.

In addition to these products, Bicom Systems also has a wide variety of supporting Desktop Applications which continue the turnkey theme through to the End User and allowing your ITSP effort to simply have what others do not and stand out from the competition.

Please feel free to look through the supporting material, however nothing quite compares to an online demo and please do ask for Account Manager, the linking piece, to contact you in your language of preference (English, Spanish, French or Portuguese). As well as the architecture there is a whole lot of other advice to be provided and Marketing Materials and Support.

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Crib Sheet: Multi-Tenant & TELCOware

Written by Stephen Wingfield on . Posted in Multi-Tenant PBX, PBX System, Support, TELCOware

The following is a Multi-Tenant and TELCOware Crib Sheet.

Introduction

  • Is this a start-up operation that is trying its feet in the water or are you looking to grow rapidly?
  • or are you an existing operation with an existing distribution base that you need to take on rapidly?
  • How many users were you looking to start with? and over 6 months?
  • Are you looking to host your systems or own it yourself?

Core System

  • Do you need redundancy?
  • Would you prefer to use your own hardware or a bench-marked appliance?
  • Do you need Telephony Billing – the rating of CDRs?
  • Any special features needed?
  • What does you next customer want most?

Telcoware

  • Do you wish to start with a minimum of investment? or have the necessary set-up for rapid growth?
  • Are you looking for automated provisioning, invoicing and payments?
  • Who is your payment gateway service provider?

Software Localization

  • Does the software need to be in a language other than English?

Marketing Materials

  • Do you have .pdf or videos by way of marketing materials?

Roadmap

  • What are you plans for mobile integration?
  • What are your priorities when choosing a system?
  • Point of Entry Price?
  • Redundancy?
  • Scalability?
  • Support Availability?
  • Futureproof of investment?
  • Features & Functions?
  • Flexibility for Custom Development?
  • Account Management Structure to assist in good advice & decisions?
  • Marketing Materials to assist in rapid entry to market?

Feel free to get started by checking out our PBXware Multi-Tenant PBX edition or our TELCOware software.

See also: Crib Sheet: Prospective Call Centers